Ok today, I am in a bit of rush about to head off to Lewes Bonfire night. The cross burning festival in the heart of twee Sussex. Where more people vote on the efgy to burn than in local elections. A place where Christopher Lee’s Lord Summerisle would be rightly scared. Unfortunately today is not for harking back to my pseudo sussex routes. Instead you get a ramble about another challenge that I have set myself.
30 by 30. Not quite self explanatory nor a poor homage to Faith the rogue slayer. 30 by 30 is my simple challenge to reach 30 countries by the grand old age of 30. Now with just over a year and a half to go, most of Europe covered this is looking pretty challenging.
I started this project a couple of years ago but never got very far. Although I am lucky to have a parent in the caribbean, my travelling had been pretty limited to one island Antigua and lot of trips to France. Until I reached Uni but then student life and possible too much time spent in student politics, got in the way of doing any proper travelling. I don’t bemoan this, quite frankly pretty fortunate to have the joy of getting to know Antigua beyond its tourist attractions. And yeah off course fortunate to have been involved in student politics – definitely learnt the importance of a thick skin…
Last October I got the opportunity to move into a warehouse in London, the downside it was still a building site (but looking back some of the best memories of living in a warehouse come from the building site). Rent free whilst my room was being built all gave me a chance to say sod it, book myself a flight and grab an interrail pass. It was just a taster two weeks and 6 countries.
Starting of in Croatia, I pretty much went to the station and jump on the next train out – this was pretty much my approach for the rest of trip. By the end of the two weeks, I had ended up in Munich, Budapbest, Vienna, Venice, Ljubljana and back to Zadar via Zagreb just about ready to fly out. Like any traveller, the odds were in my favour that I would meet a lot of awesome people. Then at the start of the year, I did my first road trip, speeding across Europe in 10 days, via Bruge, Amsterdam, Berlin and Prague.
Not long after I took a second surprise trip to Vienna. Learning even with only fours days in Bratislava there is very little to do. Too many months on and I am very aware the time to complete this challenge will fast approach. Now Europe is pretty much covered where next to squeeze in as many countries as possible?
Ghostbusters one of the many classic go to eighties films for childhood nostalgia. Sitting down to curl up with Bill Murray and Dan Ackroyd heading up the ghost busting super team, you know it gonna make you feel good. And if you have any level of google fu, the day following watching these films will be spent ‘studying’ up on everything Ghostbusters. Ready for next time someone suggests you watch these films and you can whip out tibbits about the design history of the logos.
Sadly the comfort I derived from re-watching the films, didn’t happen when I decide to take cartoon route down memory lane. Surely the loveable don’t cross the streams team, could stand the test of time in all formats?
Not if you make the same foolish mistake of putting on a lesser known ‘Ghostbusters’ cartoon that involved a gorilla called Tracey and Skeletors’ cousin Prime Evil who lives in Hauntquarters that is eerily similar to Westminster. The difference between the Real Ghostbusters and the Ghostbusters has truly been burned into my consciousness. But lets’ save that for another days blogging – today I’m calling it – why Slimer is a massive problem for the Ghostbusters universe.
I can never say I’ve been a fan of the floating green slug bucket that is our teams supposed loveable sidekick. Apparently I heard from one friend he is meant to be a ghost of a dog (I grew up with cats). Unfortunately in the pilot episode of the cartoon this is never really established. Like a lot of things that go un-explain. Our powers of suspension of disbelief are called on. Which is fair enough.
But it isn’t the outright irritating, zeppo nature of Slimer’s character that is bugging me. It is his existence as a good ghost. Hang on – wasn’t he a bad guy in the films leaving an ectoplasm covered path of destruction. Ok well lets say he has had a massive character change, been successfully rehabilitated to become upstanding citizen of society and the nether realm. This is brilliant, a second chance even in death to turn away from crime. Yes we have progressive attitude in this wise-cracking universe. And this is the eighties – a nice tokenistic screw you Thatcher et al. This will have happened off screen because the show leaves little time for rehab for any of the other ghosts. No the chance to change, to become better is never offered to the other ghosts. There is no grey areas, just all other ghosts are evil, all forms of crime carried out by the ghosts are to be treated equally – eternal lock up (well until the power goes out).
And there you have my nonsensical problem with Ghostbusters – its judicial process. For some unknown reason Slimer has been deemed worthy of rehabilitating, to have that one community service place with the Ghostbusting team. Whilst the rest of the ghosts are zapped. This isnt 28 days detention without trial this is is infinity without trial. For that reason Real Ghostbusters you have left me tutting. With your no questions asked approached to lock up and crime, you have pricked my eccentric lefties senses and now this silliness has joined the ether… Thankfully you invested a lot into those dance choregraphy lessons and it seems to have paid off – its New York city you’ve stopped some ghosts lets have a parade. For the killer dance moves I can forgive a bit of fascist tactics for controlling ghost crime.
Hopefully you don’t know me, so I can feel that sense of pride of having my words read by the outside world. And if you do know me – then you are lovely for indulging my first steps in to the blogging world.
What better a month to start writing than November? For one its cold and the glow of a computer screening is always very warming. It is also, what some of you will know is Nanowrimo – the national novel writing month. Started in 1999 Nanowrimo has created a community that brings together motivation and pressure, as I understand key ingredients for any writer. The aim to write a 50,000 word novel in a month.
Quite frankly this sounds like my idea of hell. I get major writing block and have the fear. Seriously I am the kind to draft birthday card notes such is my worry the words won’t fit. Then there is the deeply ingrained procrastination gene – the one that says we can complete this later.
I could lie and say I’ve read some infamous self help book about facing my fear and getting over it. But that isn’t the case, I have however watched a lot of cartoons and read a lot of comics – the facing your fears theme is common enough. Seems to work for Batman and that is good enough for me.
Nanowrimo appeals to me because for a long while I have wanted to write, nothing so grand as a novel but to join the world of blogging. I am entering Nanowrimo as a cheat, a fraud, a rebel one of those who is missing the point but screw those thoughts this is my challenge. The challenge to write at least one 300 word blog a day. For once to put my dyslexic paranoias aside and just write, to stop panicking that my sentences won’t make sense. It is very likely but who cares. If anyone devalues my opinions or experiences because a comma is out of place then there is not much I can do other than be very english and tut (which I quite enjoy doing).
Don’t get me wrong I welcome corrections as english is notoriously not the most dyslexic friendly. All I can hope is people can try not to be a cunt when pointing out that I am assaulting the english language (EL). I didn’t mean too, I am sure EL has often consented to these assaults and sometimes welcomed them how else would words like Kiki been born?
But lets end my first blog on a light note. Plenty of days left to get ranty. For if you keep following I welcome you to my world a place where is it safe to watch cartoons, more than tut at gender issues, read comics, to be awkward in your own skin, to talk sex and save the world from zombies – board game style.